Canada Alpine Guides - Mountaineering and Climbing in Alberta's Rocky Mountains

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Guided mountain climbing throughout Canada
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Ice climbing in the Canadian Rockies


Box 40087
Canmore, Alberta
T1W 3H9

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French Reality Blog postings:
Feb 2009
French Reality - a WI6+ testpiece in the Canadian Rockies. French Reality at the Stanley Headwall.  The smears & pillars on the left are the Monsieur Hulot area.

Prepare to get pumped! French Reality is one of the steepest, and best, peices of ice in the Rockies. It will challenge both your technique and your ability to hang on to the max! Highly recommended for those who have climbed some grade 6 ice and want to push it even harder.

The climb forms most years on the right edge of the Stanley Headwall in Kootenay National Park. Start with some excellent mixed climbing up a series of cracks & corners, then launch onto dead vertical pillars of W6+ ice to the top. In sections the ice is so steep that it feels overhanging!

Starting up the steep mixed climbing on French Reality

Location: Radium Highway (Hwy 93 South). 45 minutes from Canmore.
Length: 150m
Grade: WI6+, 5.8
Logistics: Climbs at the Stanley Headwall are best done as day trips from Canmore or Banff. French Reality is guided with a 1:1 guide to guest ratio only. Skis or snowshoes are often needed for the approach.

Climbing the first long mixed pitch.

Other Nearby Routes

  • Nemesis - WI6, 160m
  • Sea of Vapours - WI5-6+, 165m
  • and literally hundreds more...

Starting up the WI6 Pillars on French Reality

Nearing the top of the climb